Virginia Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax Officially Enters Governor Race A Year After Facing Two Sexual Assault Allegations
Fairfax faced rape and sexual assault allegations a year ago.
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Virginia Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax announced his gubernatorial candidacy a few months after he let people know he was thinking about it.
Fairfax made his speech on Sunday in Fairfax, VA. He faces at least two other Democrats in the race: Del. Jennifer Carroll Foy of Prince William County and Sen. Jennifer McClellan of Richmond.
Fairfax once again denied the allegations:
Fairfax has denied the allegations and accused the women of being part of a “smear campaign” to end his political career.
“The voters are incredibly smart. They see through this kind of destructive, politically motivated kind of politics. And they are ready to move to higher ground,” he told The Associated Press this week.
Vanessa Tyson, a professor in California, claimed Fairfax forced her to perform oral sex on him in 2004 at the Democratic National Convention:
As I cried and gagged, Mr. Fairfax forced me to perform oral sex on him. I cannot believe, given my obvious distress, that Mr. Fairfax thought this forced sexual act was consensual. To be very clear, I did not want to engage in oral sex with Mr. Fairfax and I never gave any form of consent. Quite the opposite. I consciously avoided Mr. Fairfax for the remainder of the Convention and I never spoke to him again.
Then Meredith Watson came forward. She alleges that Fairfax raped her in 2000 when they attended Duke University:
Kaneedreck Adams, 40, who attended Duke with Watson, said that in the spring of 2000, when they lived across from each other in on-campus apartments, Watson came to her crying.
“She was upset,” Adams, an attorney, said. “She told me she had been raped and she named Justin.”
“She said she couldn’t speak, but she was trying to get up and he kept pushing her down,” Adams. “She said he knew that she didn’t like what was happening, but he kept pushing her down.”
Watson provided more disturbing details from that time to Gayle King:
“Did you ever talk to him [Fairfax] after he allegedly assaulted you, did you ever say, ‘How could you do that to me, you were my friend?'” King asked.
“I did. One night after it happened … I was at a party on campus and he came and so I went to leave, like, I left. And he followed me out and was sort of following after me, calling after me,” Watson said. “And I was just running trying to get away and then I finally stopped and I turned around. And all I said to him was, ‘Why? Why would you do that to me.’ And he said, ‘I knew because of what happened to you last year that if I got you in the right situation, you would be too afraid to say or do anything about it.'”
“Meredith, you hear that and you think what?” King asked.
“He knew what he was gonna do that night when he asked me to come over,” Watson said.
Tyson, through her lawyer, once again demanded the General Assembly hold public hearings. The Democrats have refused to do anything about the allegations:
An attorney for Tyson, Debra Katz, wrote in a statement: “Apparently Lt. Governor Fairfax believes that the citizens of the Commonwealth have forgotten about the serious and credible allegations of sexual assault made against him by Dr. Vanessa Tyson and Meredith Watson and about his deplorable treatment of them after they came forward.”
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